Mike Gundy sparked immediate alarm in addressing his vacant offensive coordinator post Wednesday, saying it should be filled by March 1.
Then Gundy caught himself, saying it was just a date he was throwing out, and that the post was much closer to being filled than that, any day even.
Still, Gundy said that for all the appeal of running OSU’s offense, hiring a guy to run it isn’t as easy as it may seem.
Why? With the system in place, the new guy must adapt to the offense, not vice versa.
“I’ve put a lot of time and research into it, to try and find the guy who is the right fit,” Gundy said. “And it’s not easy here. It’s not the best job in the country for someone who wants to run their own plays.
“There are not very many coordinators, who are established coordinators, who say, ‘OK, I’ll run your system.’ That’s why it’s a little more of a difficult search than people realize.”
Gundy allowed that there’s room for some tinkering within the system, which has already taken place since Dana Holgorsen arrived to install his version of the Air Raid offense made popular by Mike Leach at Texas Tech.
“I brought Dana here to put his system in. It’s now become a hybrid of that,” Gundy said. “If you watch us, we’re so far away from what Leach ran at Tech, it’s not even close. About 40 percent of it is Dana and the other 50 or 60 percent is us, what we’ve done as a group and become very hybrid.
“That’s the system we want to run. You don’t find a guy who’s established that’s going to come in and say, ‘I want to run your system. I’m not going to call my plays.’
“That’s the hardest part.”
Still, Gundy said he’s close to pulling the trigger on a hire.
Judging by his comments, Gundy appears to have two options:
1) Hire a coordinator already versed in something close to what the Cowboys are doing.
2) Hire a non-coordinator, either a top college or NFL assistant, like he did in bringing Todd Monken in from the Jacksonville Jaguars the last time the position was open.
With Monken, it sure worked.
“That’s one way to look at it,” said Gundy. “Then you’ve got a guy who’s never coordinated. How hard is that? I don’t know, but some guys don’t do as well when they’re in charge of other guys. And some guys do.”